Newsletter August 2009
Secretary: Mike Kilduff,
Honorary President: Fr Albert Carette SDB (1932-37) Chairman: Peter Roebuck (1953-59)
Secretary: Mike Kilduff (1953-59) Treasurer: David Murphy (1961-65)
Minutes Secretary/IT Coordinator: Eric Baggaley (1946-53) Events Coordinator: Bernard O’Neill (1958-62)
Co-opted Member (Scotland): John Bergin (1965-70) Co-opted Member (South): Paul Barnes (1954-57)
From the Chairman
I want to take this opportunity of raising two matters with you:
1. In the past couple of years we have tried hard to arrange certain events (committee meetings, talks and associated social activities) in southern England, and have done so - at Great Missenden and Chertsey respectively. Unfortunately, they were not very well attended. Your Committee, therefore, has cancelled plans to go to Farnborough this autumn and will revert to arrangements based in the north-west, whilst retaining the generally successful Glasgow event held in late January. We believe this to be realistic but, as always, we would welcome any and all of your views.
2. Following the decision at the last AGM to institute a system of enrolled (i.e. subscribing) members and entitled members, we have also sought to boost the number of subscriptions (£10 per year) to the Association. At present there are around 50 subscribing members but obviously we would like more. If you do not currently subscribe, please seriously consider doing so. There is far more to life than money, but it does help: thereby, e.g. we can make arrangements appropriate to our Association, continue to keep as closely in touch with you as possible, play our part in the National Association, and support worthy causes like the Salesian effort, BOVA.
Let me also seize the chance of thanking my fellow Committee members for all their hard work. We have had some very successful events during the year, not least on 1 April when we commemorated the 75th anniversary of the cutting of the first sod for the church at Shrigley and the canonisation of Don Bosco in 1934; there is a regular flow of Newsletters; and the quantity and quality of the material on our website has burgeoned wonderfully. Our finances are also kept in very good order. Above all, the Association remains a supremely effective means of discharging our chief responsibility, that of maintaining contacts between all those, 'whatever their current persuasion' and from all over the world, who attended or worked at Shrigley throughout its existence as a junior seminary.
However, we could do with more help, particularly from members resident in the north-west, so that the burden of maintaining our momentum does not fall too heavily on one or two of our friends.
Hope to see you at the Re-union in September!
From the Secretary
The Reunion and Annual General Meeting: Shrigley, September 18th-20th 2009
‘A Call to Arms’
You will have read Bernard O’Neill’s arrangements for the September gathering in the last newsletter. One of the main features of this is the offer by our Scottish members to share their reminiscences of Shrigley in the ‘60s with us.
John Bergin, called a meeting in Glasgow to prepare for this. He writes:
We had a good get together on 12 July and we plan to meet again (and again) to do something on reminiscences and also prepare a bit of entertainment for the Savio concert.
We have still to finalise arrangements but I will get onto these in the next day or two and keep you up to speed.
I have let people know that accommodation should be booked by the end of this month.
It would be helpful if you could include "a call to arms" in the newsletter asking people who are interested in joining our merry band to get in touch with me and we'll get things finalised.
The Shrigley Hall Hotel number for bookings is 01625 575757. Mention the Shrigley Association in your call to get our agreed room rate.
Paul Barnes, Concert Organizer and MC, makes the following request:
September Reunion Saturday evening concert
If I get enough takers I propose to run the concert along the lines of a
‘Shrigley has talent” night – like the “Britain has talent” night only better!!
Please indicate if you are willing and able to perform something by return of e-mail. Alternatively, if you are willing to be considered to be one of the three judges then please indicate so. Don’t be too shy I know there is a lot of talent out there and the concert is one of the traditions of the weekend now. Contact Paul directly:
Paul also informs us that Sunday 11th October is the eve of our President Father Albert’s 90th birthday and the Association wishes to celebrate this milestone in some way. If you wish to participate in a locally arranged event, please contact Paul directly.
Subscription for the year is £10. You can pay by cheque or standing order.
Fr Felix Glowicki SDB
Since the last newsletter went out we heard of the death of Fr Felix. May he rest in peace.
On 14th May we received this message from the Phillipines:
April 1st Celebrations
In the Spring Newsletter I included the highlights of the readings from the 1st April celebrations to mark the 75th Anniversary of the cutting of the first sod for the Church of St John Bosco at Shrigley. Those readings included descriptions of the Canonisation ceremony in Rome on the same day and of Shrigley’s own celebrations which were postponed until June 1934. I did not include Paul Barnes’s full text because of shortage of space, but promised that this newsletter would carry his account in full. Here it is:
THE CANONISATION IN ROME
There was a full report on this in the Salesian Bulletin for April 1934, from which the following excerpts have been drawn:
‘In a speech…made at the Sacred Heart College in Rome…Archbishop Salotti, Secretary of the Sacred Congregation for the Propagation of the Faith, remarked that in all the long years during which he had been attached to the Vatican he had never witnessed scenes such as those which accompanied the beatification of Don Bosco. “What”, he asked, “will the crowds be like when he is canonised?”. The answer was supplied on Easter Sunday……’.
‘The great piazza of St. Peter’s was packed with a happy, struggling throng from the earliest hours of Easter Sunday morning. 60,000 or more would be the fortunate ones for whom room could be found within the mightiest church on earth. To count the teeming thousands left outside was a task which none but a juggler with figures would attempt….’.
‘”Eviva Don Bosco!” It is now but a few minutes to nine and those nearest the door take up this cry and give vent to a frenzy of hand-clapping as the banner of the new saint, accompanied by the Superior General and Superior Chapter of the Salesian Congregation, is carried in….’.
‘At twelve minutes past nine comes the triple crown and, almost at once, the silver trumpets are heard playing the beautiful and majestic papal march. The Pope has arrived! There, high on the sedia gestoria, he is borne in from the square through which, with characteristic kindness, he had decreed that the procession should this time pass [so] that the thousands left outside might not have to return altogether disappointed.…’.
‘The Successor of Peter solemnly…pronounced the words by which the shepherd-boy of Becchi was numbered among the saints….’.
‘Terce followed and then the Papal Mass, in all the beauty of the paschal rite. The celebrated composer, Mgr. Perosi, personally conducted the singing by the Sistine Choir of the magnificent new “Mass for eight voices”, which he had written specially for the occasion. After the singing of the Gospel, the Pope returned to the throne beneath the Chair of Peter and delivered the homily upon the new saint….’.
‘The Mass proceeded and at length came to an end. Once more the Pope mounted the sedia and, amid renewed outbursts of cheering, of “vivas” without end, he was borne from the throne past the Altar of the Confession where the sedia was lowered….At last the Pontiff disappeared from sight. It was now shortly after one o’clock. Seven memorable hours had passed….’.
‘Heavy rain made it impossible for St. Peter’s to be illuminated that night. It was but a joy deferred. On the following night, thousands flocked to the square of St. Peter’s and to every vantage point in Rome to see the basilica bathed in light from flares which flickered from the colonnades and on every spot even to the summit of the mighty dome….’.
On the 9th March the House Chronicle noted: ‘the Pilgrims return from Rome amid great excitement’.
SHRIGLEY’S OWN CELEBRATIONS, JUNE 1934
Earlier, on 20 February 1934, the Chronicle had recorded ‘a meeting of the Committee formed from the members of the Community to organise the forthcoming celebrations in connection with the Canonisation of Blessed John Bosco’. Details of these celebrations followed from:
‘16 June. His Lordship Bishop Moriarty, Coadjutor Bishop of Shrewsbury, arrives to take part in our “Canonisation Celebrations” and is accorded an enthusiastic reception…After supper he attends…the Latin Passion Play ‘Regnante Jesu’ given by the boys of Grammar Form. The play was excellently performed and perfectly staged, reflecting great credit on the boys and the Brothers responsible. At the conclusion of the entertainment His Lordship said he had passed a most enjoyable evening: the play itself was a little stroke of genius, and the music, singing and recitations had all combined to make the evening a most pleasant one.
17 June His Lordship celebrates Mass at 7.00 am during which he confers the Tonsure and the Four Minor Orders on the following - Revs. G. Bolger, J. Chadwick, E. Clift, E. Jackson, A. Rushton [and] J. Ryan SC….In the afternoon over 3,000 people take part in the procession in which his Lordship carries the relic of St. John Bosco, and delivers a panegyric on the Saint. The impressive and devout procession was terminated by Pontifical Benediction…in the College grounds.
His Lordship pontificates at 10.45 am…a large gathering of clergy was present in the sanctuary…The ceremonies and singing were all that could be desired…In his after dinner speech His Lordship reminded those present of the great blessing God had bestowed upon the Diocese in giving them a Missionary College which, like a House of Contemplatives, is a continual source of blessings to the Diocese. At 3 pm an Academy was held and greatly appreciated by His Lordship and clergy…He recorded the advice which his uncle, then the Bishop of Shrewsbury, gave him 53 years ago when he was leaving home for the seminary - “play well, study well, pray well: be faithful to these three and success is assured”. His Lordship left at 4.30 pm.
19 June Today we have our own “at home” celebrations. The Community and boys all dined together in the front Hall. Unfortunately the wet weather prevented the afternoon cricket, but an impromptu Concert was held in which Bro. Victor Clitheroe (Cape Town) figured prominently with his songs and conjuring tricks’.
(This account, all the other readings, and a report of the cebration can be found on the website at www.shrigleyassociation.org)
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